Whiteside Mountain, Sunset Rocks, Glen Falls - July 29, 2008

Today's hike was on three trails near Highlands, NC. First we hiked the Whiteside Mountain Trail followed by the Sunset Rocks Trail and the Glen Falls Trail. Total distance today - approx. 4 miles.

HIKERS - Kevin Anderson, John Bellamy, Dan Euliss, Pam Euliss, Bill Hunt, Kathy Hunt, Martha Hunt, Jack Jacobi, Linda Johnson, Bob Magee, Wanda Miller, Wayne Miller, Bruce O'Connor, Jeanne O'Connor, Rick Porter, Vic Robson, Dan Ross, Doug Russell, Pom Sinnock, Bob Thompson, Carole Wintle.

TRAIL INFO. - The 2 mile loop trail at Whiteside Mountain has some of the most awesome views in the Southeast as it leads the hiker over the top of gigantic rock cliffs. Next, the Sunset Rocks trail is near downtown Highlands as it starts across from the Highlands Botanical Gardens and leads up to two rock-faced overlooks. On the west side is the Sunset Rock location and on the east side is the Sunrise Rock location. And finally, we did the Glen Falls Trail south of Highlands off of the Dillard Highway.

Directions: Whiteside Mountain is about halfway between Highlands and Cashiers off of Hwy 64 turn onto Whiteside Mtn. Rd and go about 1 mile to the parking lot. The Highlands Botanical Garden near downtown Highlands is accessed by taking Main Street straight through town (north to south) . Turn left onto Sixth St. and make a right turn into the Station driveway. Glenn Falls is about 2 miles south/west of Highlands off of Hwy 106 (Dillard Highway) turn at the Glen Falls sign and drive on a dirt road to the Glen Falls Parking Lot.

Another great day for a hike!  Mostly fair and mild! Temperatures ranged from the low 70's to mid 70's F.

WILDFLOWERS IN BLOOM: Tall Bluet, Michaux's Saxifrage, Spiderwort, Summersweet, Cow Wheat, Turk's Cap Lily, Rosebay Rhododendrun, White Snakeroot, White Woods Aster, Mountain Hydrangea, Stachys, Whorled Loosestrife, Healall, Hawkweed, Woodland Sunflower, Whorled Coreopsis, Starry Campion, Bergamot, Indian Pipes, St. John's Wort,Pale Corydalis, White Yarrow, Teaberry, Galax, Sourwood, Flowering Spurge and Ox-eye Daisy.

BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Ovenbird, Crow, Pine Warbler, Towhee, Brown Thrasher and a Robin.

scroll down for photos.......

On our way up Whiteside Mountain.
Enjoying the view at the first viewpoint.
Awesome rock cliffs with protective cable fencing.
We sometimes see Peregrine Falcons soaring here. (not today)
Another breathtaking view!
The high point of the mountain. .
This giant rock cliff is named Devil's Courthouse.
Next, we did the Sunset Rock Trail. It is known to be a good birding trail.
Sunset Rock overlooks Highlands, NC.
This is the view from the Sunrise Rock.
Lunchtime at the Highlands Botanical Gardens.
This is the view looking down from the top of Glen Falls.
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r font 2 rows) Kevin Anderson, Carole Wintle, Rick Porter, Jeanne O'Connor, Linda Johnson, Wanda Miller, Dan Euliss, Pam Euliss, Vic Robson, Bruce O'Connor, Doug Russell and Jack Jacobi. (l-r back) Bob Thompson, John Bellamy, Wayne Miller, Pom Sinnock, Dan Ross, Bill Hunt, Martha Hunt, Kathy Hunt and Bob Magee.

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